History

WurliTzer Opus 501, a 3-manual, 15-rank Style 260 Special, was shipped from the factory on January 10, 1922.  WurliTzer designated each organ that it manufactured with an Opus number (similar to a serial number), and the factory produced 2,234 organs between 1910 and 1940.  The Style 260 was introduced as a 14-rank organ in 1921 and was considered to be the standard medium-sized WurliTzer.  Opus 501 was designated as a Style 260 Special because a Brass Saxophone was added to the standard 14 ranks.  Later in 1922 the Saxophone became standard on the 260, therefore later standard Style 260’s were 15-rank organs. Between 1921 and 1929 WurliTzer manufactured 48 Style 260’s or 260 Specials, and Opus 501 was the third organ of this style.  We believe that Opus 501 is the earliest known example of a Style 260 that is relatively intact and can be  recognized as its original opus.   (The information about the WurliTzer Style 260 was taken from “The WurliTzer Pipe Organ: An Illustrated History” by David L. Junchen, compiled and edited by Jeff Weiler, which is available from the American Theatre Organ Society.) 

 

 

Postcard showing WurliTzer Opus 501 in the orchestra pit of the Lafayette Theatre

 

 

Advertisement for The Rudolph WurliTzer Co. featuring Opus 501

in the January 19, 1924 "Exhibitors Herald" trade magazine

Lafayette Square Theatre and Office Building, Buffalo, NY

                                                             

Gee Dad, It's A WurliTzer!